It is now cheaper to pay a mortgage than to rent a property in all areas of Ireland. Average rents across the country have risen by 1.5% since the start of the year. In Dublin, rents have increased 6.8% since January.
With demand still outstripping supply, tenants’ support groups have successfully lobbied for further reforms to the Residential Tenancies Act of 2004 to provide tenants with greater security of tenure.
The Residential Tenancies (Amendment) Bill, 2018 (the Bill) seeks to answer these calls by making the following key changes:
For the Landlord
- Increased sanction: The maximum fines for contraventions of the 2004 Act by landlords will jump from €3,000 to €15,000.
- Greater focus on proving validity of termination: For example, if a landlord serves notice on a tenant on the grounds that he intends to sell the property, he or she must now enter into a contract for sale within 9 months or else the property must be offered back to the tenant.
For the Tenant
- Enhanced notice periods: Tenants’ minimum termination notice period to be increased to 90 days for all tenancies under one year and 120 days for all tenancies between one and five years.
Calls for a public database of dwelling specific rent information to encourage compliance with rent pressure zone restrictions have not made the final cut.